Discover all the excitement as Florida manatees take refuge for warmth at Manatee Lagoon in Riviera Beach, Florida! Admission is free. November is Manatee Awareness Month! Photo – Robert Scott Thayer
Greetings and great news for you! Florida manatees are now navigating into Manatee Lagoon, located in Riviera Beach, Florida! As the water temperatures fall below 68 degrees Fahrenheit, my warm-blooded buddies head into the warm water discharge area of the Florida Power & Light energy operations (FPL) adjacent to the Lake Worth Lagoon.
Since its opening in February 2016, tens of thousands of people and hundreds of manatees had visited the new, state-of-the-art Manatee Lagoon! And more good news is that Manatee Lagoon’s “educational programming and outreach has earned it a conservation certification from the prestigious Wildlife Habitat Council for its awareness and community engagement efforts.” This wonderful certification recognizes Manatee Lagoon’s excellent wildlife habitat management and conservation programs. “Manatee Lagoon provides learning opportunities for visitors and residents alike to better understand and protect manatees and the ecosystems they inhabit,” said Pamela Rauch, vice president, external affairs and economic development for Florida Power & Light Company. “We at FPL have an important role to play in educating audiences about how our power plants benefit this endangered animal and Florida’s constantly evolving ecological landscape.”
An excellent example of Manatee Lagoon’s conservation efforts was its first-ever underwater cleanup of the Lake Worth Lagoon held with Sea 2 Shore Alliance. Certified divers performed an underwater cleanup of the neighboring Lake Worth estuary, removing garbage, fishing lines and boating debris, which can easily harm us manatees.
New this Year at Manatee Lagoon!
All visitors this year will now have choices to enjoy something from their seasonal menu in the Manatee Lagoon café. You also can now explore the beauty and wonders of the Lake Worth Lagoon ecosystem and nearby reefs when you see “a fish tank that replicates the brackish environment of the Lagoon as well as nearby marine offshore coral reef systems.” Finally, when you visit Manatee Lagoon’s Facebook page and check out the details of the “Spot-the-Manatee” contest, you can earn a chance to win a cool gift certificate in the Manatee Lagoon gift shop where you’ll also find my Kobee Manatee books!
So if you’re anywhere near the Palm Beach area of Florida, you owe it to yourself to stop by Manatee Lagoon’s FPL’s eco-discovery center – and it’s FREE!
Manatee season runs from November 15th to March 31st. Uncover the coolest manatee experience throughout the 16,000 square-foot center. Enjoy manatee exhibits; learn about its local history with interactive touchscreen displays, a giant manatee skeleton and a TV screen showing you a live feed of the Lake Worth Lagoon. Manatee Lagoon’s “manatee cam” can also be found online.”
When you go up to the second floor at the center, you can go out on their observation deck, which gives you an awesome view of the surrounding lagoon, along with the spectacular marine life below. And of course you’ll easily see my manatee buddies because of the pure crystal clear water in the lagoon!
And because this water is so clear, you’ll also see big eagle rays, barracuda, and all sorts of colorful fish swimming in the lagoon. And my author, Robert Scott Thayer will do a book signing at Manatee Lagoon in early 2017! (More updates to come). Here’s their address…
6000 N. Flagler Drive
Riviera Beach, FL
Hours: Tuesday – Sunday 9a.m. to 4p.m. Closed Mondays
So join me and let’s continue celebrating Manatee Awareness Month together and help spread the word about us manatees – Florida’s official state marine mammal!
If you see any sick or injured manatees, please call the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission at: 1-888-404-FWCC. They are the folks who are responsible for rescuing us in Florida.
Here’s the Save the Manatee Club link to learn more about us manatees …
Here’s a cool link for you to learn more about how we’re rescued and brought into rehabilitation …
~ Kobee Manatee